Las Vegas vs Macau: Which casino paradise is the best?
When it comes to identifying a casino-lover’s paradise, most will think immediately of the bright lights of Las Vegas – with its huge hotels, ostentatious entertainment and 24-hour party culture. But for serious players, there’s a new and more grown-up venue hot on its heels, and threatening to take its place as the most iconic gambling destination in the world.
The up-and-coming Asian city of Macau is becoming a popular choice for the luxury traveller, an autonomous region on the south coast of China, across the Pearl River Delta from Hong Kong. Often boldly dubbed ‘the gambling capital of the world’, with gambling making up to 50% of its total revenue, it’s clear that casinos here are big business – but is it really a big enough contender for the iconic Las Vegas?
In a word, yes – though it depends what you’re looking for in your gambling getaway.
In general, visitors will spend longer in Vegas than Macau, with 99% of visitors to Vegas staying overnight, at least. Meanwhile, only 50% stay overnight in Macau. Although this could be attributed to Las Vegas’ desert location, the city offers plenty to see and do at all hours, and is a mesmerizing destination you’re unlikely to find anything similar to elsewhere. In this area, it’s still streets ahead of Macau – and this is unlikely to change any time soon.
In terms of size and tourist offering, Macau has around 113 hotels at present and over 37,000 rooms – which is not a patch on sprawling Sin City. With 150,000 hotel rooms in Vegas, it still offers a far greater range of accommodation than its Asian counterpart, though hotels in both locations are nonetheless quite similarly priced.
Interestingly enough, Macau has only half the number of casinos Vegas does, with 49 in comparison to the more than 100 on offer in Vegas – yet despite this, it attracts more than double the amount of gambling revenue than the western American city. The average gambling budget each visitor will bring to Vegas is $619 compared with $250 in Macau, but the overall gaming revenue in Macau is almost $17 billion more!
A variety of casino games enjoy popularity across the two cities, and in Vegas and across the USA in general, slot and machine games are favourites. In Macau and the rest of Asia, meanwhile, it’s table games that take centre stage – so if you’re a fan of Baccarat or Sicbo, this could be the place for you.
Foodies will find themselves well catered for in whichever city they choose, with both Vegas and Macau offering a vast range of gourmet restaurants serving up mouth-watering fine dining cuisinse and a range of other options to suit all tastes. In fact, you’ll find some of the very finest restaurants in the world there, which are sure to leave you spoilt for choice whatever it is you’re looking for.
So with both Vegas and Macau proving tempting prospects for casino fanatics, choosing the city for you is a tough call. With both boasting some of the world’s very best casinos, restaurants and hotels, it’s difficult to choose just one.
The more experienced casino frequenter will likely find that Macau is better suited to their tastes. It’s a great city in which to enjoy a civilized and upmarket casino experience, where drinking is prohibited and players are serious. Here, your winnings are all your own, too – so if you’re lucky enough to scoop the jackpot, then you’ll find yourself quids in. Macau is the destination to go for if you’re looking for a sophisticated getaway – with plenty of time for rest and downtime when you’re not exploring this bustling city.
Party lovers, on the other hand, will not go wrong on a hedonistic break in Sin City – so if you want to gamble and party then head to Vegas! It’s loud, bright and ostentatious – but has made such a name for itself for a very good reason. Casinos in Vegas are more than just a haven for gamblers, doubling up as giant entertainment venues that are packed with shows and events every single night. This is the place to go to have all-out fun, with drinks on tap and never-ending excitement. Be warned though – win the jackpot here, and you’ll lose 25-30% of it to the government!
Please gamble responsibly (18+ UK) – check age restrictions before participating